How your shopping can improve the world

There is a lasting effect in every single dollar we spend.

What we buy and where we buy it from impacts humans and the environment. There are so many ethical companies now, where their products help humans and the earth.

Taking care of your fellow human can start with how you choose to spend your money.


Surely, you’re aware that a monsoon of discontent is raining down on unjust corporations that aren’t taking good care of their employees and their producers. This situation is financial apartheid, where the chasm between the rich and the poor is a widening gap. It frequently looks like this: underpaid, under-insured employees in corporations whose executives make a killing, or factory workers in China who are withstanding unsafe work conditions and making unlivable wages.

Check out these wonderful companies with a BIG MISSION TO DO GOOD in the world.

These AREN’T affiliate links. I simply want to help you discover KIND PRODUCTS. Please share this list with your friends.

  • Amazon.com: Your shopping can help benefit your favorite charity on Amazon year round! Be sure to use this link: http://smile.amazon.com/ and select whatever charity you want. Or, search for your favorite. You can even support your local schools this way. There are SO MANY charitable causes that NEED YOU, so please use this whenever you’re shopping!
  • Radiant Cosmetics This is makeup with a mission to end human trafficking. Radiant Cosmetics was built around a passion to fight human trafficking. With every product you purchase, they donate time, money and effort to help fight the injustice.
  • Tom’s (One for One) Your purchase helps people restore independence, economic potential, health, & education opportunities. When you purchase a pair of shoes, Tom’s will donate a pair of shoes to a child in need. When you buy a pair of eyewear, they will provide vision services to someone who is vision impaired.
  • Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 6.51.38 PMWomen for Women – Help women survivors of war rebuild their lives. Check out the Gifts that Give Back catalog and honor someone special with a gift that will leave a lasting impact on women’s lives.

Ethical Retailers Making a Difference:

  • Songcroft Naturals is a luxurious, natural, free-of-toxic ingredients brand. I use their skin care products daily. By purchasing SongCroft Naturals products, you are supporting a small family farm that practices ecologically sustainable farming. Songcroft Naturals is a family-owned business born on their farm in Snohomish Washington. Many of the product’s ingredients are grown sustainably on their own farm.
  • Patagonia is conscientious about the environment and is careful with their use of paper, electricity, and oil. They make fleece jackets from recycled plastic bottles and other fleece jackets. They treat their employees fairly and they give one percent of sales to grassroots activists.
  • PACT – this company uses super soft organic cotton, ethically manufactured.
  • Threads 4 Thought creates clothing using sustainable materials with graphics inspired by issues that they care about like peace and unity. Their mission is to create fashion that evokes a shared responsibility for each other and our planet. They work with humane factories and highly effective charities. Image
  • Bohemian Kouture –All the clothing and accessories from are hand-made (in Portland, OR) and constructed from recycled textiles.  Most pieces are hand washable, and all are hand-selected from pieces that that have been ‘gently’ worn.

    Does your receiver really need another THING?

    Make a donation in someone’s honor instead of buying them more stuff that they probably don’t want.

These are all companies with whom Mike and I have a history of regular donations. I personally recommend them all:

  • Help me raise $1000 to nourish the needy. You can donate it in someone else’s honor! Countless men, women and children in Western Washington go without a regular meal. Your gift helps find homes for perfectly good food that won’t be offered in stores, like oddly-shaped carrots. Food Lifeline ensures that each $1 you donate can provide five nutritious meals through their network of local food banks, meal programs and shelters. 
  • Global Giving. This company received four out of four stars by Charity Watch.org for being transparent and well-run. I shopped around and found five awesome programs to support on all sorts of causes that matter to me: elder treatment, animal treatment, and education for refugees.
  • Environmental Working Group (EWG) is the creator of helpful consumer references, such as Skin Deep (evaluating healthy vs toxic skincare products) and the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen list, which I reference often in helping my clients avoid pesticides. EWG empowers people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. EWG drives consumer choice and civic action with breakthrough research and education.
  • The International Association for Human Values programs enhance clarity of mind, shift attitudes and behaviors, and develop leaders and communities that are resilient, responsible, and inspired. I’ve volunteered for, and supported, this organization since 2006.
  • The Unstoppable Foundation Help end poverty by ending ignorance and hunger. This is an awesome “teach a man to fish” program.
  • No Kid HungryHelp end child hunger in the US
  • Kiva.Org Help finance small businesses with microloans so that they can pull themselves out of poverty and change their futures. 
  • Indie Gogo Boost someone’s great idea with a small, medium, or large donation. 

These companies I want to donate to, but haven’t tested them out yet. I’ve followed them both for several years:

  • The Seva Foundation – Help restore sight among the poor.
  • Heifer International – Help end hunger & poverty by donating livestock to families. This is an awesome “teach a man to fish” program.

Now, I want to hear from you.

  • Do you tend to donate all year long, or in one sum at the end of the year?
  • Who organization do you feel deserves your support?
  • What organization did I leave off this list?

2 comments

  • Frances, thank you for this! I was just thinking of doing some research to round out a list of organizations to shop/donate to as Christmas gifts. Lucky for me, you just made life easier.

    I’ll also be donating to Oceana (“adopting” a manatee for my nephew), an organization I give to monthly for the same price as a Netflix account. They protect the ocean and mostly try to interfere with the thoughtless plans of big companies.

    Donating as gift giving makes sense to me. I’d be honored if someone ever donated in my name. Thank you for the inspiration and Happy Holidays, Frances!

    • Hi Caroline,

      First, I’m so glad this post helped you! Second, I absolutely love the idea of adopting a Manatee! Thanks for mentioning this. My nieces and nephews have so many gifts coming their way from family members that I felt a little lost on what to offer them. Donating in their name is something I’ve thought of doing, and an ocean mammal would certainly be inspiring!! Thank you and happy holidays!

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